Happy Solstice everyone! And for those that qualify - Happy Father's Day!
It has been a couple months since the last update from the backyard, here in San Diego county, U.S.
Eventful in the backyard and work, as well - thus no updates recently ;-)
It has been a very big season for the orioles so far, though it seems of late, some of the families may have moved to a less crowded area! At one point, I counted a solid 8 maybe 9 adult male Hooded Orioles at a single time, very hard to keep track.This was after some of the fledglings began to show up, so not a huge leap to imagine 18 to 27 or more birds. At any rate, more adult males than I have seen before. The antics have been very entertaining :-)
Here is a male caught just this afternoon.
From last post, the number of Rufous hummers was at a high, though I think now all I am seeing are Allen's. The Rufous are probably further north, may see them on the way back south the end of summer.
Another first for the backyard - though we have had a pair of Scrub jays hanging around snagging peanuts for a couple years now, this year we have fledglings!
Here is a shot of the pair squabbling at the fence, as siblings do! They are notable for their gray heads, adults have blue head feathers.
Back to the orioles for a moment - another first is seeing 2-3 of them climbing around in a blooming Mallow plant in the yard. They seem to be picking bugs off the branches, clearly not getting near the flowers.
Here is a shot of the mallow, have not managed to catch them while camera was in hand - of course! The mallow is the thin branchy? plant with purplish blooms. The orioles tend to weigh the branches way down almost curving to the ground, if they work their way too close to the ends!
Here is a shot of a few soggy lesser finches enjoying bathtime.
I'll leave with a comment - Ernie Cowen, longtime contributor to our local papers (now San Diego Union-Tribune) wrote a very cool article this weekend about Spotted Towhees, shy, but found in this area. I have not seen them for a little while, but have heard one regularly Saturdays at the Safari Park.